The Unicoi County High School drama department will present a new production of “Grease: School Version” in May. (Contributed photo)

By Richard Rourk

Teacher Lori Ann Wright and the Unicoi County High School Drama Department are at it again. The drama department has brought several high-quality productions to the stage over the years, and this year will be no different.

Wright has worked tirelessly to bring back a “classic” and she’s allowed The Erwin Record to chronicle the production every step of the way.

Once Wright decided what production would fit for this year, the journey began. Wright chose “Grease: School Version,” written by Samuel French, but could not move forward until numerous hours of paperwork had been filed to get the rights to begin the production. According to Wright, work on a production begins six months prior to the first showing.

“We reached out to get the licensing rights ball rolling in November,” Wright told The Erwin Record.

Wright’s first order of business is finding a show that meets the cast size requirements and compliments the skill level of the students, as well as being in budget. Once the play is chosen, the research is done for licensing and purchasing rights to the show. It is at this point that the budget is reviewed and fundraising is planned.

For “Grease: School Version,” this was a tall order.

“For this show the budget is $8,000 dollars for three performances,” Wright said.

Roughly three months out from the first show, Wright is tasked with getting the cast of UCHS students together. Wright is currently in the process of holding auditions. Wright is also in the process of lining up the full production team. Confirmation of the script delivery date is also happening this month.

According to the official press release, the show dates are officially set. The UCHS Drama Department is proud to present “Grease: School Version” in the UCHS auditorium on May 2-4 at 7 p.m.

Tickets for the show will go on sale starting April 1, 2019 at the UCHS main office for advance purchase or can be bought 30 minutes before each performance. Tickets are $8 for adults, $5 for students and $3 for children under 12.

“Grease: School Version” is presented by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc. “Grease: School Version” book, music and lyrics are by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey.

Please keep an eye out for the next installment as The Erwin Record and Wright bring you updates on casting, ticket designing and publicity for the upcoming production.